The best hiking routes in the Pyrenees

The Pyrenees is a mountain range in the northeast of Spain encompassing about 19000 square kilometres throughout Gipuzkoa, Navarre, Huesca, Lleida and Girona. It makes sense that this place holds dozens of hiking routes, most of which will amaze us with their dreamlike landscapes. In this article, we have gathered the routes that hikers usually like the most.

Routes in the Aragonese Pyrenees

Route to the Anayet

A rocky peak reflecting on a lake

Sunrise in the Anayet. | Shutterstock

The mountain of Anayet lies to the north of Aragon, near the Spanish-French border. This route spreads for 17 kilometres, and it has more than 1000 vertical metres. It should take about five and a half hours to finish.

This route departs from the Formigal-Panticosa Ski Resort. During the first kilometres, one can see the peak of Culivillas and some small waterfalls. The path will take us to the top of the Anayet, which stands out for being sharp and red. The views from the top, at a height of 2545 metres, are simply spectacular.

Route of Aguas Tuertas

Mist spreading over a green valley

A misty morning in Aguas Tuertas. | Shutterstock

The route of Aguas Tuertas goes on for 16 kilometres, lasting approximately four hours. It spreads along the river Aragón Subordán, which twists forming meanders. This route is called after the glacial valley of Aguas Tuertas.

When it comes to its level of difficulty, this route is almost for all audiences. The only section that might pose a challenge here is the slope at the end of the route. As a matter of fact, the route of Aguas Tuertas ends up next to the Ibón de Estanés, a lake at an altitude of 1900 metres. It is definitely one of the best hiking routes to explore the Pyrenees in all its richness.

The catwalks of the Vero river

The catwalks of the Vero river and a waterfall

The catwalks of the Vero river. | Shutterstock

In the province of Huesca, we will find one of the most original hiking routes in the Pyrenees: the catwalks of the Vero river. This route is about four kilometres long, of medium difficulty, and it takes approximately four hours to complete. Nevertheless, its most peculiar aspect is the fact that most of the route is made of catwalks that go along the Vero river. Likewise, there are beautiful waterfalls in some sections, making this route even more special.

The route of Cola de Caballo

A waterfall in the Ordesa and Monte Perdido National Park

A waterfall in the Ordesa and Monte Perdido National Park. | Shutterstock

The Ordesa and Monte Perdido National Park is one of the most magical places in the Pyrenees, hence it had to be on this list. Indeed, the route of Cola de Caballo displays one of the best views of the valley of Ordesa. Besides, the route passes by some of the most emblematic spots in the valley, like the prairie of Ordesa, the Camino de los Cazadores, the Circo de Cotatuero or the waterfall of Cola de Caballo, the source behind the name of the route. The total length of the route is 20 kilometres; hence it is suggested to have basic physical conditions before embarking on it.

The canyon of Añisclo

A chapel on a rock wall

The chapel of San Úrbez, in Huesca. | Shutterstock

The Aragonese Pyrenees also provide a short, easy-going route that allows us to admire one of the most spectacular natural landscapes in Spain: the canyon of Añisclo. First, we will have to cross the medieval bridge of San Úrbez from Escalona. Then, we will walk along the gorge until we reach the chapel of San Úrbez, which is carved in the rock. Lastly, we will descend to the Aso river, where we will find a mill.

Routes in the Navarrese Pyrenees

The route of the caves of Zugarramurdi

A cave from inside and trees outside

The caves of Zugarramurdi. | Shutterstock

For those who are not used to playing sports or they travel with kids, the route of the caves of Zugarramurdi will be a perfect choice. These caves are located in the north of Navarre, and legend has it that, centuries ago, witches gathered there to perform magic and rituals.

We can get to the caves through a short, smooth circular route, a great way of admiring the forests of the comarca of Baztan. Once there, the caves themselves are definitely worth visiting. This is, without the shadow of a doubt, a great hiking route for all ages.

The route of the reservoir of Irabia

A lake surrounded by woods

The reservoir of Irabia in the Irati Forest. | Shutterstock

Still in Navarre, we can check out one of the routes through the Irati Forest. This area stands out for exhibiting a mix of beech, birch, hollies and yew, and it looks particularly beautiful in autumn. Among the many hiking routes we can find there, the one heading to the reservoir of Irabia is always a good option. It is a 10-kilometre route with little slope, so it has a low difficulty. One can see the reservoir of Irabia throughout the whole route, as well as a series of peculiar-shaped beech and fir. Besides, this route is circular too, thus it ends exactly where it started.

Routes in the Catalan Pyrenees

Route of the 7 lakes

A valley with a lake surrounded by mountains

The lake of Estany Plan. | Shutterstock

The name of the route of the 7 lakes refers to the lakes of Circo de Colomers, which can be seen from these paths in the valley of Boí, next to the valley of Aran in Lleida. In addition, we can choose either the short version, which takes about three or four hours to finish, or the long version, lasting seven or eight hours.

One of the bests spots to rest is the lake of Estany Plan, a wonderful place for laying down and enjoying the views. Indeed, the settings this route will amaze us with are really worth halting to admire them. Just like it happens in most of the hiking routes we will find in the Pyrenees, one can never decide whether to stop and look around or to keep walking.


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